*Pic: Back to school ... Soft and cuddly ScoMo in the classroom. Pic from his website ...
The Abbott-Turnbull government’s new, improved, ScoMo is a soft and fluffy laundry powder with extra whitener. Attractively packaged on ABC and aggressively promoted, it is another of its unmitigated campaign disasters.
It’s not just that ScoMo won’t sell. Consumers won’t touch it with a copper stick. Previous Morrison products are said to have damaged the social fabric of the nation.
Could it be the price? The pitch? Previous brandings were a worry: the public hasn’t got over ‘Operation Sovereign Borders’ which militarised our refugee response; put our national compassion on a war foundation and damaged our international reputation for fairness and compassion.
Even Liberals hate the ‘duplicitous bastard’, says Oz Political Editor Dennis Shanahan. Morrison openly stalked Hockey for years and ran dead in Abbott’s last spill. He’s in deep monkey pod poo.
With all that behind him, (not that it ever could be), what is certain today is that ScoMo is more of a liability to the Liberals and to his country than Joe Hockey. And it gets worse.
No. Not it’s not just the Tea Party anti-taxation rhetoric from an Australian Treasurer, disturbing as it is. It’s bad at any time to find a fox in your hen-coop, let alone a treasurer selling tax as a burden rather than a social obligation. It’s the soft-soap approach.
‘Trust me. I’m not bringing in a GST’. ‘But, he says ‘we do need to find a way to get our tax rates lower. For a politician who buggered his credibility utterly on Manus and Nauru, ScoMo’s new pitch is outrageous. Yet so is his script. Save it for your pal Ray Hadley on 2GB, ScoMo. He’ll have another Bible handy.
...a GST hike to pay for tax cuts…
Morrison spouts IPA-Tea Party drivel about our tax system. He’s word perfect on how bracket creep is crippling productivity. John Elliott’s pork derriere it is. He wants a GST hike to pay for tax cuts to boost Liberal re-electability. So he can keep sweet with Liberal sponsors about their super or their tax evasion.
Where the bloody hell are you, Morrison, former Tourism Oz tout, whose contract went bad and ended in a pay-out, and whose previous social services stint, in my opinion, wrecked the lives of many a poor and disabled Australian, is a serial makeover merchant.
Yet one thing stands like stone apart from his blood pump. He loves to withhold. It’s part of his stand-up routine where he calls for a national conversation on taxation in which he says nothing and nothing we say matters.
Of course in saying nothing, Morrison says it all. ‘Bugger Westminster ministerial responsibility’. Let me satisfy my pathological need to extract what I want from you; keep from you that which is yours’. Like the people’s right to be told the truth. Lord knows there are enough alarming rumours.
‘Things are not as they seem,’ blows ScoMo. ‘They are as I say’. Commodity prices are crashing, export earnings tank. Near half our corporations do not pay any tax and want to pay even less, but we do not have a revenue problem; we have an expenditure problem. Because of Labor.
You don’t have to be a Freudian to sense the man’s not well.
Just as well he’s only Treasurer. Morrison, a flop in his previous jobs, is, nevertheless, possesses enough manic ambition that he is a perceived rival to Malcolm who needed to be kicked upstairs.
ScoMo is a cuddly toy…
Now a cute and fluffy Treasure-bunny, ScoMo is a cuddly toy in the window of Business As Usual, the department store run Down Under by Adani, the IPA and Co. Treasury does all the work. The minister takes all the credit and dodges all responsibility while focusing on the main task. Selling his new shtick.
Cue Annabel Crabb’s soft-soapie touchy-feely recent episode of Kitchen Cabinet. This is a ScoMo mark III commercial, a vehicle for reminiscing fondly how he and Jules were given the bum’s rush in Sri Lanka but how he just loves its curries.
‘Yummy, yummy, yummy, I’ve got love in my tummy’. Annabel can’t shut the man up, he’s so pumped with his own promo. Put a V in the programme guide for Vomit bag warning alert.
‘Crabbers’ helps all she can but in the end KC is a tacky failure. We are meant to see a wholesome, home loving, sweet and decent human being. But, behind the rimless glasses, lurks the monster of Manus Island, the man who had a go at Gillian Triggs for daring to question the detention of children.
All we get is the feeling of being conned. He’ll do anything to pull the wool. Australians should not let him get away with any of it. The last thing we should do is offer him a soft documentary. Let’s not lose sight of the monster under the bunny costume.
In 2010, Morrison took pains to condemn Labor when relatives of asylum seekers killed in a boat tragedy off Christmas Island were flown to attend their loved ones’ funerals in Sydney.
‘Tax-payers should not be paying for this’, he thundered. Later he would spend millions on turn-back boats.
...dinky custom-built orange fibreglass craft…
As Minister of Immigration, Morrison ordered officers to intercept terrified refugees, confiscate and destroy their boats before decanting men, women and children into dinky custom-built orange fibreglass craft with just enough fuel to get back into the hands of their tormentors and then consigned them to the high seas. Stop them drowning. Allow them to come to some other death.
The most recent version of Monash University’s Australia Border deaths database records deaths at the Australian frontier for the period 1 January 2000 - November 2015, with a recorded 1,974 plus border deaths.
Morrison washes his hands of his ministerial responsibility to protect those seeking refuge and not wilfully endanger them. To say nothing of our UN commitments on refoulement or the Convention against torture. Not that these go uncontested.
As Lord High Monkey Pod God, the Suppository of Wisdom, fellow anal retentive Tony Abbot puts it: ‘Look, I think Australians are pretty sick of being lectured to.’ We don’t even run Nauru or Manus.
No need for any lecture. Anyone can see it’s wrong. The family of Reza Barati, the 23 year old Iranian bashed to death February 18 2014 on Manus by guards want answers. Others ingest toxic household products in a bid to end their suffering. Every second day someone attempts self-harm.
Hamid Kehazaei, 24, dies of septicaemia from a cut three weeks because there’s so much paper work in the way of getting him to a Brisbane hospital. A 23 year old Somali refugee who is pregnant after being raped on Nauru suffers monumental obstructionism instead of timely access to a termination procedure and other relevant medical help.
He’s been granted immunity…
Like Dutton, the Minister says he can’t comment on individual cases. Criticisms, Morrison tells us, are ‘not based on any primary knowledge of the event or the circumstances’. Dutton follows this dismissive line in his response to the preventable death of Fazel Chegeni in October 2015 or the Christmas Island riot which was direct result of his policy of mixing violent criminals, minor offenders and asylum seekers. Withholding, denying, truth is a gift which keeps on giving.
Oddly, none of this bubbles up through the KC froth. Morrison is not to be held to account for his past portfolios. He’s been granted immunity by dint of his elevation to Treasurer-Poo Bah.
He stopped the boats. Amen. Rudd just halted them. Besides Liberal treasurers don’t do questions. They rant about Labor’s wasteful failure while blithely creating a debt and deficit mess of their own.
To be fair to the treasurer, he’s set himself an impossible task. There are just too many unanswered questions, even leaving aside those from previous jobs he’s walked off. Here’s a few for starters.
• What makes it a ‘fantasy’ to ensure MNC’s pay their fair share of tax?
• Who will repay the eighty billion of school and hospital funding you took to force the states into a GST? You can’t do this and tax cuts, too.
• Why not cut super subsidies of $50 billion a year for those on higher incomes? Lessen the burden on the average taxpayer; protect and support the poor and needy.
• If violence towards women is a national crisis, why take money from women’s refuges?
There is sophistry and there is Turnbull. Sunday night the PM said cuts were possible because costs are down because we are ‘having a deeper conversation’ about domestic violence now. We are?
Tell that to the women desperate to find shelter. 423 people are turned away from homeless shelters every night in Australia.
...a tax cut bribe…
Clearly the Treasurer is overwhelmed by what he must answer for. Either that or he hasn’t got the foggiest idea of what he’s doing and is desperately trying to stall until he can run the budget the IPA prepared at home earlier. He can hope that a tax cut bribe for some of us will fool us into buying a GST hike for everyone, a GST whose real cost is double to lower income earners than on the well-heeled.
ScoMo’s saying nothing. Instead he chants his mantra: We don’t have a revenue problem, we have an expenditure problem.
Don’t rule out something colourful; some high camp performance art. Tax accountants may be decorated for their bravery in collecting more from the poor while the rich get rewarded for evasion.
Will ScoMo match the Dadaist absurdity and scurrilous nonsense of his ‘on water’ denial of ministerial responsibility? Will we suddenly be at war with the demonised, desperate poor who, like our asylum seekers, have done everything to deserve our compassion and absolutely nothing to incur our bizarrely inappropriate show of brute force and hostility?
Suddenly? Aren’t we there already? ScoMo, your mob’s already cut our hearts out. Do we really need another ritual disembowelling of the body politic, just to prove it?
• Links to social media campaign Save The Farm. Treasurer Morrison has the final say on the sale of the VDL company ( Jan Cameron explains why she is bidding ... HERE ) which rests now in the hands of the Foreign Investment Review Board ...